This sesame crusted salmon with green curry comes together quickly but looks like a million bucks. Every bite is bursting with flavor from the green curry sauce, sesame crust, and tender marinated salmon.
Sesame Crusted Salmon with Green Curry
Sesame crusted salmon
- 1 lb salmon
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon Chinese hot mustard
- 1 tablespoon white sesame seeds
- 1 tablespoon black sesame seeds
- 1 tablespoon unsweetened coconut flakes
Green curry sauce
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 shallots minced
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon minced ginger
- 1 Thai chile minced (optional)
- 1 stalk lemongrass bruised
- 1 tablespoon Thai green curry paste
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon coriander
- ¼ teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 cup full fat coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons fish sauce
- 2 teaspoons lime juice
- fresh basil for garnish
- lime wedges for serving
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Prepare salmon. Season fish with salt and pepper. Combine honey, lime juice, olive oil, and Chinese hot mustard in a small bowl. Pour marinade over the salmon and let sit for 10 minutes.
- Combine white and black sesame seeds with coconut flakes. Sprinkle mixture on top of the salmon. Lay salmon on prepared baking sheet and bake for 12-14 minutes or until the fish flakes easily.
- Meanwhile, make green curry sauce. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add shallots, garlic, ginger, Thai chile if using, and lemongrass. Saute the aromatics until softened, about 2 minutes. Add green curry paste, cumin, coriander, and turmeric, stirring to combine. Saute for 1 more minute.
- Add coconut milk and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and continue to simmer for 5 minutes. Season sauce with brown sugar, fish sauce, and lime juice and simmer for 1 more minute.
- Ladle green curry sauce on the bottom on a serving plate. Lay salmon on top and garnish with fresh basil. Serve with lime wedges on the side.
Watch how to make this:
When in doubt, put sauce on it. That's my motto when I don't know how to dress up a protein. I'll roast a chicken and decide it's too plain and end up foraging my fridge for a finishing sauce. Fortunately, it always transforms a boring dinner into an exciting one. Taking that idea, I decided to pair sesame crusted salmon with green curry sauce. The creamy coconut sauce with a hint of lime perfectly matches the crusted fish. Finish the meal with fresh herbs and you'll end up with a restaurant-style meal!
- Salmon: A fatty fish known for its rich flavor and high content of omega-3 fatty acids. You can substitute salmon for another firm white fish such as cod or halibut.
- Chinese hot mustard: A condiment with a sharp, spicy flavor. If you can't find Chinese hot mustard, you can use Dijon mustard instead.
- Black sesame seeds: Small seeds with a mild, nutty flavor. If you can't find black sesame seeds, replace them with an equal amount of white sesame seeds.
- Unsweetened coconut flakes: Adds a hint of coconut flavor that mirrors the coconut in the green curry sauce.
- Lemongrass: A fragrant herb with a citrusy flavor and aroma. If you can't find lemongrass, use 1 teaspoon of lime zest instead.
- Green curry paste: A paste made from green chilies, herbs, and spices. Each paste is made slightly differently with different heat levels. I used Mae Ploy green curry paste in this recipe.
- Coconut milk: Adds richness and a hint of coconut flavor to the green curry sauce.
- Fish sauce: Adds umami and seasons the sauce. You can also use soy sauce instead if you prefer.
How to Make Sesame Crusted Salmon with Green Curry
Step 1: Prepare the Salmon
To prepare the salmon, marinate it in a Chinese honey mustard sauce for 10 minutes. Chinese hot mustard is essentially spicy mustard. If you have trouble sourcing the ingredient, use Dijon mustard instead.
Then, combine black sesame seeds with white sesame seeds and unsweetened coconut flakes and sprinkle them on top of the salmon. If you can't find black sesame seeds, substitute them with an equal amount of white sesame seeds.
I personally love adding a crust to fish because it adds texture. Take this sesame crusted salmon with green curry for example. Salmon is a fatty fish and has a rich, buttery texture. Add a sesame coconut topping and suddenly you have a little crunch with every bite. It's quite lovely if I do say so myself.
Bake the salmon in the oven for 12-15 minutes or until the flesh flakes easily. You can also pan-fry the fish but I think it's easiest to just pop it in the oven.
Step 2: Make Green Curry Sauce
While the fish is cooking, prepare the green curry sauce. Saute the aromatics including the shallots, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, and Thai chile. Feel free to omit the Thai chile if you want a mild sauce.
Add the green curry paste and spices and stir to combine. I thought about making green curry paste from scratch but honestly, the storebought ones are great already.
Add coconut milk and bring the sauce to a simmer. Make sure to use full-fat coconut milk for a richer, thicker sauce. If you use low-fat coconut milk, the sauce will have a thinner consistency.
Finish the green curry by seasoning it with fish sauce, lime juice, and brown sugar. If you dislike fish sauce, you can use soy sauce instead. However, it won't taste exactly the same.
Step 3: Serve and Enjoy!
Pour the green curry sauce on a serving platter and arrange the sesame coconut crusted salmon on top. Garnish the dish with fresh basil and serve with extra lime wedges on the side.
I absolutely loved the variety of textures and flavors in this sesame crusted salmon with green curry sauce. The sauce itself is creamy and bursting with so much flavor. The spice and hint of lime play well with the buttery salmon and the pop of sesame doesn't hurt either. Say goodbye to boring salmon!
Can I use a different type of fish instead of salmon?
Yes, you can use other types of fish such as mahi mahi, cod, or halibut as a substitute for salmon in this recipe. Adjust the cooking time accordingly based on the thickness of the fish.
Can I use sweetened coconut flakes instead of unsweetened ones?
While unsweetened coconut flakes are recommended for this recipe, you can use sweetened coconut flakes as a substitute. Keep in mind that the sweetened flakes will add an extra touch of sweetness to the salmon.
Can I use light coconut milk instead of full fat?
Full-fat coconut milk is recommended for a creamier and richer flavor. However, if you prefer a lighter version, you can use light coconut milk as a substitute. Keep in mind that the sauce may have a slightly thinner consistency with light coconut milk.
For more salmon inspiration check out this miso salmon with ikura and mushroom rice!